Program Director’s Message

George Sarosi, M.D.

George Sarosi, M.D., Program Director

Welcome to the General Surgery Residency Training Program at the University of Florida Department of Surgery. As you peruse this site, we trust that you will see the outstanding general surgery training experience that we have to offer.

The purpose of our program is to create a learning environment that focuses on objective-driven education to challenge learners and encourage critical thinking. An excellent didactic program provides the structure to acquire the depth and breadth of knowledge that will serve as the foundation for sound surgical judgment and evidence-based solutions.

Surgical trainees learn to deliver excellent patient care for the diverse patients seen at UF Health Shands Hospital and are well prepared to practice after graduation. UF Health sees patients from every county in Florida and every state in the United States annually. Our 11 county catchment area ensures a broad patient base. Our reputation as the top hospital in Florida by U.S. News & World Report ensures that residents are participating in the highest quality care.

Our didactic program is structured to meet the specific needs of trainees at different stages of education. Surgery 101 is a course for PGY 1 residents who require a broad-based introduction to surgical pathobiology and clinical problems. Our second-year residents are enrolled in Surgery 201, which focuses on the care of patients with urgent, emergent medical conditions and onto critical care. Surgery 401 provides a structured learning environment in which our PGY 3 and 4 residents critically examine time-honored and current surgical literature.

Our goal is to provide you with the tools to practice evidence-based surgery for a lifetime. Our chief residents participate in a self-designed, bi-weekly program, Surgery 501, in which they examine the finer points of complex surgical problems under the guidance of an experienced faculty member, often through oral board review sessions. These mandatory, weekly educational sessions provide a structured format to supplement the intense reading program each trainee pursues independently.

In addition to a strong didactic program, we strengthen and test technical skills in the dry laboratory and through hands-on training sessions. We also provide state-of-the art surgical simulation that will prepare residents to practice surgery in the future. Although sound clinical skills emanate from an excellent fund of knowledge and superior clinical assessment, the highly trained general surgery resident at UF benefits from individual technical instruction from many master surgeons. We seek to optimize clinical training such that each trainee experiences the vast scope of general surgical operations. Therefore, each trainee will meet, and in many cases exceed, the ACGME requirements for index cases. A significant strength of our training program is complex GI surgery, and our trainees receive excellent exposure to complex laparoscopy, colorectal and hepatobiliary surgeries.

We recognize that individuals choose general surgical training for different reasons and have different goals. We strive to meet the individual interests of each trainee, while adhering to the requirements set forth by governing bodies. If you wish to become an excellent community general surgeon or pursue an academic career, the training program at UF can meet your needs.

As an academic department in a research-intensive medical school, the Department of Surgery has numerous faculty members funded by the National Institutes of Health. The department also is home to three NIH T32 fellows who focus on molecular biology in burns and trauma. This training grant allows these surgical residents two years of salary-protected time to research. All residents are expected to spend two years engaged in full-time academic development, in addition to their traditional five years of clinical training. Residents with a strong interest in research may pursue a Ph.D. during this period. To date, five residents have earned Ph.D. degrees during their research experiences. Many of our trainees choose to pursue clinical fellowship training after completing their general surgery residency, and we seek to prepare trainees to obtain the most competitive positions after they finish training.

In summary, our mission is to provide the best general surgical training by inculcating highly motivated learners with knowledge that translates into superb clinical judgment and expert technical skill. Importantly, we instill in our trainees a purpose and commitment to the patient, confidence based on self-education for lifelong learning and professionalism that will allow them to adapt to the ever-changing environment of general surgery. We welcome your consideration of our program and are excited that you have chosen a stimulating career in general surgery.

George A. Sarosi, M.D.
Program Director